LUBUMBASHI, Oct 31 (Reuters) - TP Mazembe Englebert took a
giant step towards retaining their African Champions League
title when the Democratic Republic of Congo club beat Tunisia's
Esperance 5-0 in the first leg of the final on Sunday.
Ngandu Kasongo and Given Singuluma both scored twice in
Lubumbashi as Mazembe delighted their home fans.
Alain Kaluytika scored the other in a one-sided win that put
Mazembe in an almost unassailable position for the second leg in
Tunis on November 13.
Mazembe, who needed the away goals rule to win last year's
Champions League, benefited from the sending-off midway through
the first half of Esperance defender Mohamed Ben Mansour.
Yet by then they had the lead courtesy of Kasongo's
There was controversy as Esperance protested that the ball
had not crossed the line when Kasongo rose to head home a free-kick.
Kaluytika converted a penalty on the stroke of half-time
after being brought down in the Esperance area, before Singuluma
snatched both his goals in a four-minute spell after the
Singuluma's first came with a 55th-minute header and his
second in the 59th minute from a low shot.
Kasongo completed the scoring with 15 minutes left.
Mazembe's triumph last year came four decades after their
success in the competition in 1967 and 1968.
In 1968 Mazembe beat Etoile Filante of Togo 5-0 in the first
leg of the final and went on to win 9-1 on aggregate.
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